On 21 May 2017, the web site Resistance Report published an article claiming that the government of Saudi Arabia had donated $100 million to “Ivanka Trump’s female entrepreneurship fund”:
President Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia was fortuitous for both the Islamic nation and for the Trump family — specifically First Daughter Ivanka.
On the same weekend that Jared Kushner — Ivanka’s husband — brokered a $100 billion arms deal with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, officially the largest arms sale in U.S. history, the Saudis reciprocated by donating $100 million to Ivanka Trump’s female entrepreneurship fund.
A similar version of the story appeared on the USA News Post web site the next day.
The Resistance Report cited a 21 May 2017 Wall Street Journal article which stated, more accurately:
The World Bank announced Sunday at an event with Ivanka Trump, the U.S. president’s daughter and senior White House adviser, that Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates have pledged a combined $100 million to a fund that will assist women entrepreneurs and small business owners.
That article described Trump as “an advocate for businesswomen who proposed the fund.”
A spokesperson for the World Bank told us that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had pledged a combined $100 million towards what it called “a facility to assist women entrepreneurs in developing countries.”
The spokesperson emphasized: “It will not be a “fund,” in that we see it providing training, mentoring, and policy advice as well as finance,” and confirmed:
There will be no “Ivanka Trump Fund” at the World Bank…Ivanka Trump would play no operational or fundraising role for this facility.
Trump did champion the idea, and was present at an event in Saudi Arabia, where the World Bank project was announced.
Not only will Trump have no role in running or raising funds for the project, there also does not appear to be a way in which she could stand to gain financially from it. The World Bank spokesperson told us:
It is difficult to envision how any individual in an industrial country could personally benefit from a facility to provide assistance to women in developing countries.
For all these reasons, it’s grossly misleading to claim, as the Resistance Report did, that Ivanka Trump “got a $100 million donation from Saudi Arabia”. This claim is rendered even less accurate by the fact that the figure of $100 million relates to a combined pledged donation from both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Lee, Carol E. “Saudi Arabia, U.A.E. Pledge $100 Million to World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund.”
Wall Street Journal. 21 May 2017